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Seligmann, Kurt, 1900-1962



  • Existence: 1900 - 1962


Kurt Seligmann, Swiss-American painter, printmaker, sculptor, stage designer and writer, was born in Basel, Switzerland on July 20, 1900. Seligmann moved to Paris, France, after studying at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Geneva (1920) and at the Accademia di Belle Arti in Florence (1927). While in Paris, Seligmann was associated with the Surrealists and Abstraction-Création groups. During this period he also developed "Neo-Concretism" with Japanese artist Taro Okamoto. He exhibited in Basel, Bern, Brussels, Poland and Tokyo.

Seligmann married Arlette Paraf in 1935. Paraf was the granddaughter of Nathan Wildenstein who founded the Wildenstein Gallery.

At the outbreak of the second World War, Kurt and Arlette Seligmann emigrated to the United States, ultimately settling on a farm in Sugar Loaf, New York. In addition to producing artwork, Seligmann taught at the New School and Brooklyn College, and designed costumes and sets for dance performances. He authored two books on magic: The History of Magic (New York, 1948) and R as Magic, Supernaturalism and Religion (New York, 1968), the latter was published posthumously.

Seligmann died at his home in Sugar Loaf, New York on January 2, 1962.

Found in 3 Collections and/or Records:

Katharine Kuh papers

Call Number: YCAL MSS 15

The papers contain correspondence and art on greeting cards by artists whose works she exhibited.

Dates: 1937-1964 (inclusive)

Kurt Seligmann papers

Call Number: YCAL MSS 827
Abstract: The Kurt Seligmann Papers consist of correspondence, personal papers, photographs, and artwork documenting his personal life and artwork. The papers provide insight into Seligmann's work as a surrealist painter and engraver and his circle of friends, many of whom were artists and writers. Correspondents include Nicolas Calas, Alexander Calder, Pierre Courthion, Enrico Donati, Jean Dubuffet, Charles Duits, Georges Duthuit, George W. Federoff, Fernand Léger, Pierre Mabille, Robert Motherwell,...
Dates: 1883-1991

Tiger's Eye records

Call Number: YCAL MSS 362

The records document all aspects of the production and distribution of the little magazine The Tiger's Eye, from its inception in 1947 through the decision to cease publication in 1951. Correspondence, manuscripts, and business records document the creative and editorial process, the enthusiasm of its readership, its subscription base, and the work involved in producing and distributing the issues.

Dates: 1939-1955

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Expatriate artists 2
Art -- Collectors and collecting -- United States 1
Art -- Periodicals 1
Art criticism 1
Art critics -- United States 1